Planning to Get an Abdominoplasty? Here’s How to Prepare

A flatter, more toned stomach is something that many people desire, but few achieve through diet and exercise alone. Abdominoplasty is a cosmetic surgery procedure that can help to create the contoured stomach you’ve been dreaming of. If you’re considering undergoing an abdominoplasty, here are a few tips to help you prepare for the surgery:

What Is Abdominoplasty?

Abdominoplasty is a cosmetic surgery procedure that removes excess skin and fat from the stomach area. The procedure can also help to tighten the abdominal muscles, resulting in a flatter, more toned appearance. Abdominoplasty is often performed on patients who have undergone significant weight loss or who have been pregnant, as the skin and muscles in the stomach area can become stretched and weak over time. The surgery is usually performed under general anesthesia and takes about two to five hours to complete. 

Schedule Initial Consultation

One of the best ways to prepare for abdominoplasty, or tummy tuck surgery, is to schedule an initial consultation with a board-certified plastic surgeon. As mentioned at, during your consultation, your surgeon will evaluate your individual goals and concerns, as well as perform a physical examination. This will help to ensure that you are a good candidate for surgery and allow your surgeon to develop a customized treatment plan. Your consultation is also an opportunity to ask any questions about the procedure. Be sure to ask about your surgeon’s experience, training, and approach to the operation. By educating yourself and choosing a qualified surgeon, you can help ensure that you experience great results from your tummy tuck surgery.

Quit Smoking

If you are a smoker, quitting smoking before undergoing any cosmetic surgery is essential. Smoking can significantly increase your risk of complications following surgery. In addition, it can also interfere with healing and lead to poor results. Smoking constricts blood vessels and reduces blood flow, which can delay healing and increase the risk of infection. For these reasons, quit smoking at least six weeks before your abdominoplasty procedure. If you have trouble quitting smoking alone, many resources are available to help you, including nicotine replacement therapies and counseling. Your surgeon can also provide information on how to best prepare for surgery and quit smoking. 

Get Clear on Your Goals

Before undergoing abdominoplasty, it is important to have realistic expectations about the results of your surgery. This means getting clear on your goals and understanding what the procedure can and cannot do for you. For instance, a tummy tuck can improve the appearance of loose, excess skin and underlying tissue in the abdominal area. It can also tighten weakened or stretched muscles, resulting in a flatter, more toned stomach. However, it cannot remove stretch marks or cellulite. In addition, it will not help you lose weight. It is essential to discuss your goals with your surgeon during your consultation to ensure that abdominoplasty is right for you.

Get Lab Testing and Medical Clearance

 If you are planning to undergo elective surgery, such as abdominoplasty, it is important to get lab testing and medical clearance from your primary care physician. This is typically done 4-6 weeks before surgery. Your doctor will likely order a basic metabolic panel, complete blood count, and coagulation studies. Depending on your medical history, you may also need a chest x-ray, electrocardiogram, or other tests. This testing aims to ensure that you are healthy enough for surgery and identify any potential risks or complications. Once you have received clearance from your doctor, you will be one step closer to achieving your goals.

Take Specific Medications

You will need to take certain medications prior to surgery, such as antibiotics and pain medication. Your surgeon will provide specific instructions on what medication to take and when. Follow these instructions carefully to help reduce your risk of complications. In addition, be sure to let your surgeon know if you are taking any over-the-counter or herbal medications, as these could interact with your prescribed medication.

Arrange for Help Following Surgery

After your procedure, you will need someone to drive you home and stay with you for at least the first 24 hours. Having someone who can help you with basic tasks, such as bathing, dressing, and moving around, is vital. It will help ensure you remain safe and comfortable as you recover from surgery. Once you are home, take it easy and get plenty of rest. Avoid strenuous activity and heavy lifting for at least two weeks following surgery. Slowly begin to resume your normal activities as you feel more comfortable and avoid anything that may put too much strain on your incisions.

Undergoing abdominoplasty is a big decision. However, it may be the right choice if you are unhappy with your appearance due to excess skin or tissue in the abdominal area. By following these tips, you can help ensure that you are as prepared as possible for your procedure and maximize your chances of achieving beautiful, long-lasting results.